Sprint Center - Kansas City, MO
5:30 p.m. PST
Radio: KNBR 1050 | (Local) TV: None (?)
Buddy blog: Hot Hot Hoops
As much as I'd love to get the image of the last game the Golden State Warriors played against the Miami Heat out of my head, LeBron James' game-winning shot ended up producing one of the more iconic moments of the 2013-14 season and it seemed like that celebration on the floor of Oracle Arena was in every NBA ad for the remainder of the season. And it might end up being one of the lasting image that Warriors fans have of LeBron in a Heat uniform, either by force of marketing or emotion.
Tonight, the Warriors get their first look at the post-LeBron Heat, who have struggled out of the gate without their superstar. They're in full-on "it's a process" mode without King James, which figures to make this a game in which the Warriors will have another opportunity to iron out some kinks while adding another win to Steve Kerr's slim resume.
And of course the player who will continue to be the focal point of the Warriors' preseason experimentation is Harrison Barnes. Barnes led the Warriors with a game-high 35 minutes last night against the Denver Nuggets; Barnes also scored just 5 points on 2-for-8 shooting as a starter in his home state.
Although the numbers weren't exactly spectacular, Travis Hines of the Ames Tribune reported that, "Barnes was at his best late against the (Nuggets), coming up with a nifty pass on an alley-oop to teammate James Michael McAdoo and then a game-clinching jumper that gave the Warriors a five-point lead late." Part of that might have been due to playing at the 4, according to what Rusty Simmons of the SF Chronicle reported. So maybe there was a bright spot there, but it's hard to say much about that performance without having seen it...and the spot wasn't that bright. Optimistically, it might be reasonable to say that as long as the team as a whole is a work-in-progress offensively it will be hard to expect Barnes to be productive.
Ognjen "The Dream" Kuzmic apparently stole the show, but Simmons reports that both Andrew Bogut and David Lee will be back in action tonight (while Marreese Speights will be out to attend his grandfather's funeral), which might limit the chances of a repeat performance.
For more on last night's game, check out IQ's links.